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October 20, 2011

Gilt Bar

by gastronomicbypass

Website

In one word – Cavernous

Location – 230 W. Kinzie (Kinzie and Franklin)

Food – Last night was cold, windy and rainy, so I took the opportunity to dive into autumnal comfort food.  My eating partner and I went halfsies on the meal and started with the beet salad, which was served with hazelnuts, whipped goat cheese and preserved lemon.  I thought the cheese was overabundant on the plate, but beyond that it was quite satisfying.  Then we moved to the salmon.  Because they pan roast it, it was perfectly crispy on the outside.  It’s then served with brown butter, capers and lemon.  It was a far better version of what I would cook at home for myself.  Points for execution but not for creativity.  Then we had the butternut squash ricotta gnocchi which ROCKED MY WORLD.  Team, be real, you put pancetta, sage, squash and pasta in a bowl and I am happy.  Note that it’s really sweet for a pasta dish, so if you have an aversion to sweetness (which I clearly do not), beware.  My eating partner was in it to win it and wanted dessert, so he got the warm milk chocolate chunk brownie (which is actually 3 brownies).  I had a bite (or three) – super rich and perfect for those who enjoy decadent chocolate.

Drink – They have a pretty decent cocktail list.  My eating partner had the Sazerac, which is one of those rye drinks that all the hipsters are drinking.  I had a Grenache/Syrah blend, which the recommendation of our server and was perfect for me.

Service – Good things to say here, I found our server to be attentive and offer good recommendations.  And, as long time readers know, I love it when someone from the restaurant says I made a good choice for my order.  He did that.

Scene – It was cold, rainy, windy and a Wednesday, yet Gilt was bumpin’.  You definitely need a reservation unless you want to go to their lounge or bar.  The restaurant is pretty dark and with all its unfinished wood accents and candles, it felt pretty cavernous to me.

Occasion – I found the restaurant to be pretty loud, so this is a place that I would recommend taking a group to.  They seemed to have more 4 tops and communal tables than most places, so they probably are pretty accommodating.

Price – I didn’t think it was cheap.  We split the meal (but my glass of wine was far too expensive), so I was putting down $60 with tax and tip.  More than I would pay on a Wednesday normally, but appropriate for a Friday or Saturday.

If you like, try…Publican, avec, Longman & Eagle

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